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Couscous Tabbouleh with Yorkshire Squeaky
June 2023
Reading time 2 Minutes

The recipe is perfect for a light and refreshing lunch on a hot day

Razan and Raghid make their cheese in a charming, historic area of Calderdale in West Yorkshire and this recipe is a favourite of Razan's. She likes to cook this for her family, generally using mint-flavoured Yorkshire Squeaky, though you could use the plain version and add fresh mint to the tabbouleh. I've enjoyed this with the chilli-flavoured cheese, to give the dish a little heat.

I got to the creamery just in time to see the curds being sieved from the whey and ladled into regimented shallow trays to be pressed into large bars of Yorkshire Squeaky. The whole room smelled of warm souring milk, reminiscent of the mug of hot milk I used to drink before bed as a child. Throughout the whole time I was there, including a short trip to the local farm where they source their milk, Razan and Raghid were so hospitable and generous with their time, and I thank them dearly for it. 

Using milk delivered from a local farm in the Upper Calder Valley, Razan and Raghid make their cheese in a truly individual way, showing the benefits of blending two cultures together – Syrian knowledge and British produce – to create a unique product.

  • 180g couscous
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 420ml boiling water
  • olive oil, for dressing the couscous
  • handful of fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 large tomatoes, finely diced
  • 3 spring onions, finely chopped
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 x 220g pack of Yorkshire Squeaky, sliced
  • 1 romaine or Little Gem lettuce
  • pomegranate molasses or fresh pomegranate seeds, to serve (optional)

Place the couscous in a large bowl, add the cumin and a pinch of salt and mix together well. Pour the boiling water over the couscous, then cover the bowl with a tea towel and leave until all the water has been absorbed – this should take around five minutes. Stir in a generous slosh of olive oil to enrich the couscous.

Add the parsley, tomatoes and spring onions to the couscous, followed by the lemon juice, and combine everything together well. 

Place a cast-iron or heavy-based frying pan on a high heat, and once hot, add the slices of Yorkshire Squeaky to the pan and fry the cheese on each side for one to two minutes or until golden.

Separate the lettuce leaves and place in a large serving dish. Spoon the couscous and vegetable mixture on to the leaves and arrange the fried cheese on top. Razan suggests serving the dish with a drizzle of pomegranate molasses or a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds to finish.

A Portrait of British Cheese (Quadrille, £27) Photography ©Angus D. Birditt.

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